Monday, October 08, 2007

Genealogue Challenge #64

This challenge comes courtesy of John of Transylvanian Dutch.

They met at an ice cream saloon in Scranton before they got married.

The following morning, a death notice appeared for her in the local paper.

1) How many children did the groom and his "zombie bride" have?
2) Did they reach their Silver anniversary?
3) From 1911-1919 what was his profession?
4) What were the names of the zombie's parents?
5) The answer to this is silly, but what was the name of the youngest
sibling in the earliest census the future zombie appears in?


A fun one Thanks,
1.) between 5-8, [The 1900 census indicated Justine had 7 children 5 yet living. In 1910 Justine reported 5 with 5 yet living (and the youngest child born in 1902). The living children were: Hilda, Helen, Robert L., Elizabeth, Thelma.

2.)Yes they were both still living and together in 1910 (1909 would have marked their 25th)

3.)The 1910 & 1920 indicate John was into real Estate, although between he could have done something else.

4.) Samuel & Sarah Levy.

5.) Lilly Levy


1) How many children they had: 8 children
2) Reach silver anniversary: yes they were married OVER 25 years
3) 1911 - 1919 profession: elected as a Republican to the Sixty-second and to the three succeeding Congresses(March 4,1911-March 3,1919)[I can't read the census entry for occupation]
4) Justine's parent's names: Samuel Levy & Sarah ______
5) Justine's youngest sibling in 1870 census: Lilly Levy

Drew Smith

Using "ice cream saloon" and "Scranton" as search terms, Google finds us the story in the New York Times of 23 February 1884 concerning John R. Farr and Justine Levy. (Not unlike the story of my paternal grandmother, who was born Jewish but converted to Catholicism to marry my Catholic grandfather, whereupon her mother sat shiva for her.)

1. In the 1900 census, Justine has has 7 children, with 4 still alive. In the 1910 census, Justine has 5 children (including the 4 from 1900), giving us a grand total of 8 children.

2. As John and Justine are still together in 1920, they apparently reached their 25th anniversary.

3. In 1910 and 1920, John R. Farr is listed as a real estate agent.

4. In 1880, Justine Levi is living with her sister Esther and Esther's husband, Jacob Fleisher (the J.A. Fleisher who owned the leather shop, as mentioned in the NY Times article). In 1870, Justine and Esther are living in Pittston, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, with their siblings and their parents, Samuel and Sarah Levy.

5. The answer is Silly, indeed (a boy in his terrible twos).


1. Five Children: Hilde, Helen, Robert Elizabeth, Thelma

2. Yes, they married in 1884. they would have celebrated their silver anniversary in 1909, and were still together in the 1910 census.

3. He was a member of the U S House of Representatives, representing Pennsylvania.

4. Her parents were Samuel and Sarah Levy

5. though it looks like Silly, I believe her younger sister was Lilly!


Among the four of you, I think you've answered all the questions correctly. Here's a link to the story of the unhappy beginning of their happy marriage.

Thanks for the challenge, John!


I think Justine's mother's name was Rosa, not Sarah.
1870 is the only time her name appears as Sarah.
In 1880, Justine was enumerated twice, once with her brother-in-law and once with her mother, Rosa and sisters Milly and "Silly."
In 1860, Samuel and Rosa Levi are in Pittston with their children Henry and Ester.
In the 1890-1892 Scranton city directory, Rosa Levy is listed as the widow of Samuel. At the same address were Isaac and Lilly.
Fun stuff!


Right as always, Sharon—the Rosas do outnumber the Sarahs.

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